Imagine a middle-aged guy who has the maturity of a 12-year-old. He's 50 pounds overweight, he's a slacker with no ambition and he has the emotional intelligence of a toad. But one day, he suddenly catches the eye of a stunning woman who, apparently, finds his shy nature and awkwardness super adorable. As she gets to know him, she becomes so smitten with his personality that she disregards his mediocre looks and gross habits. And as an added bonus, once they get married, she assumes full responsibility for his overall growth and has to constantly push him to be a more decent human being. Any of that sound familiar?
This "dimwitted slacker meets beauty queen" storyline has been repeated in so many sitcoms, from King of Queens to The Simpsons. But what's even weirder is that we literally never see these roles reversed, where a responsible, well-rounded and handsome guy sweeps an average girl off her feet. This just sends the message that ladies are only desirable if they go the extra mile and conform to society's standards of beauty. Meanwhile, men can make literally no effort and still land the woman of their dreams. Talk about unfair.
See which sitcom husbands landed amazing women who were way out of their league:
Bill was actually a star football player back in high school, so in a sense, we get why an attractive woman like Judith (who was also popular in school) would end up with Bill. But unfortunately for Judith, Bill just... let himself go. After spending just six weeks in college, he went on to become a lazy and out of shape husband who mostly drinks booze and watches sports. And as for Judy (who's in perfect shape and could literally pass for 25), she works as a dental assistant and she's clearly more intelligent than her husband. Bill totally lucked out.
Ralph deserves a bit of credit because he does work hard and have the desire to achieve greater success. However, the way he goes about it is just ridiculous because he's not very sharp and he lashes out whenever he doesn't get his way. He usually finds himself in sticky situations because he's either attempting to save money, impress others, or get rich quick. Plus, he's extremely overweight and not very attractive. But on the other hand, Alice is wise, level-headed, bold and simply stunning. Isn't it wild how opposites attract?
Yes, we know that Doug is lovable, goofy and hilarious. But without these things, he's an average delivery guy who has a huge obsession with food and literally no self-control (we're talking about a man who ate over five pounds of egg rolls just moments before he met his wife for dinner). Carrie, on the other hand, is a legal secretary who's driven, hard-working, and intelligent. But on the downside, she's also quick-tempered, bitter, manipulative, and sometimes hypocritical. Although these two have amazing chemistry, it often feels like Carrie's goal is to control Doug... It's no wonder why she dated down.
Dont get us wrong - Philip is an inspiring activist and talented lawyer who works really hard to support his family. He's the uncle that we all wish we had, and it's quite refreshing to see a male sitcom husband who isn't an immature oaf. But let's face it, Vivian is a svelte beauty queen and Philip is a big guy with an even bigger appetite. Even though Vivian's character was portrayed by two actresses during the show's run, both of them looked like supermodels compared to Philip, who was rather average looking.
Like Philip Banks, Carl is a stocky, hard-working man who looks out for his family. But on top of that, he's also obsessed with being the bread-winner of the home, he's way too strict, and he can be really stingy. His wife Harriette, however, is a bit more affectionate and understanding, especially when it comes to the kids. And it comes as no surprise that she's also much more attractive than he is.
To us, Ray is like that average guy who can fade into the background because he's just not that interesting. He's immature, he's annoying, and any effort that he puts into helping out at home is usually minimal. He also rarely ever has the courage to stand up for himself and he goes to great lengths to avoid conflict. So of course, poor Debra is left with the burden of maintaining the home, raising the kids, and dealing with Ray's relatives. She's super attractive and she has years of PR experience under her belt. But because her husband seems incapable of pulling his own weight, she just goes through a seemingly endless cycle of being overworked and underappreciated, which honestly sucks.
Al and Peggy have an interesting dynamic. It's a rare case where the wife is super lazy and irresponsible while the husband tries to make a decent living (in this case, as a shoe salesman). Al is almost always miserable and Peggy constantly disrespects him, along with the rest of the family. But in the looks department, Peggy is way out of Al's league. It's hard to see why they ever got married in the first place.
We've got Peter, who's an unintelligent and overweight blue-collar worker, and then we've got Lois, the gorgeous and intelligent housewife from a wealthy family. They're pretty much complete opposites when it comes to their personalities, but both of them have their fair share of faults. While Peter has been impulsive and extremely irresponsible, Lois has been unfaithful countless times and she actually enjoys being condescending towards her husband. So yeah, Lois may be married to a dim-witted guy, but she at least gets an ego boost out of it.
As the director of this show once put it, Homer is "creatively brilliant in his stupidity." He's an overweight safety inspector with the attention span of a gnat, he's lazy, and he has serious anger issues. But somehow, he was able to win the heart of a grounded, caring and intelligent woman. Marge is patient enough to put up with Homer's antics, she has an awesome sense of humor, and she's hard-working. She's also very attractive, which is probably why other men have shown interest. But even in those moments, she chose to stay faithful to her boring husband. Marge is just way too good for Homer.
The war veteran is way past his prime, he gets easily annoyed, and he's not very affectionate. But surprisingly enough, he got himself a young and outspoken wife who's young and gorgeous enough to be a top model. Their age gap is huge enough for them to be mistaken for father and daughter, and it's hard to ignore the huge disconnect when it comes to most of their habits and preferences. Still, they somehow manage to make it work... Which means that miracles really do happen.
The fact that he's always in good spirits is a major plus, but it doesn't excuse the fact that he eats incessantly and loves to roam around the house with an open robe and no underwear. Bob ended up marrying Midge, aka the object of almost every teenage boy's fantasy. She started out as the stereotypical dumb blonde, but then she actually became a more driven feminist. Midge eventually wound up leaving Bob and went to California, while he moved on to Joanne.
Cheryl looks like the type of character who was the prettiest and most popular girl in high school. And even after birthing a few kids, she still looks as youthful and fit as ever. But we definitely can't say the same for her husband of several years, Jim. He's actually dull, unattractive, and beyond lazy. Considering his flat character, we honestly can't see why Cheryl would settle for someone like Jim.
He may get teased by his coworkers all the time, but it doesn't matter because he has the best life at home. Each day after work, he sees his stunning wife, Gayle, and his three daughters. We don't learn that much about Gayle, but part of us can understand why she'd go for a guy like Jerry. For one, he's always positive, and despite his horrible treatment at work, he has proven to be patient, warm-hearted, and kind. That alone speaks volumes.
Penny has always been out of Leonard's league and Leonard knows this. It's why he's been self-conscious about his appearance and why he gets extremely jealous whenever Penny interacts with other guys. She's the tall and gorgeous blonde who can get any man she wants and he's the awkward, stereotypical geek with decent social skills. But that didn't stop Leonard from constantly pining after her. And lucky for him, he eventually got what he wanted.
If we were Bernadette, we probably wouldn't have had the patience to go on a date with a short and pale nerd with a bowl cut. We'd probably be turned off by the inappropriate pick-up lines or the fact that he's a self-proclaimed "ladies' man." But surprisingly, Bernadette (aka the most adorable and intimidating girl ever) was brave enough to look past all that and give him a chance. As of now, the two are husband and wife and they have a little family of their own. But just seeing them together is a constant reminder of how lucky Howard is to have someone as pretty as Bernie.
Jess is the ultimate manic pixie dream girl. She has big blue eyes, she wears bright colors, and she has quite a few quirks (like randomly breaking into song during super awkward moments). But the guy that she fell for is more like a kid in a grown man's body. Nick is disorganized, lazy, and so irresponsible when it comes to money. But fortunately for him, he married an adorkable wife who'd bend over backward to support her husband and keep him happy.
Schmidt went from being an overweight outcast to being an attractive ladies' man. But even though he was technically in great shape and very successful, his cocky behavior and offensive remarks were off-putting. To be fair though, he did seem aware of his shortcomings and he even tried to end things with CeCe because he felt he wasn't good enough for her. But of course, that never worked out because he had already fallen for her. It was only a matter of time before CeCe would start to develop feelings for him, too. At least in TV land...